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February 29, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Leap Day - This day occurs every four years, except for years ending with “00” that are not divisible by 400. So when the year 2100 comes around, it will not be a leap year.  The reason we have a periodic extra day is because it takes the earth 365 and slightly less than ¼ days to travel around the sun so every four years we add a day in order to catch up.  But since it is slightly less than ¼ of a day every year, we will need to skip the leap year every so often.  But not too often.  The last time we skipped a leap year was the year 1900.

Bachelor’s Day - This is a day that, according to Irish legend. came into being because of a deal between St. Bridget and St. Patrick.  They agreed that every four years, single women would be permitted to ignore tradition and propose marriage to whatever single man they may desire. If the man refuses, they have to pay a penalty of either some article(s) of clothing or money.  In some cases, laws were created to decide how many articles of clothing or how much money he had to pay.  In other places that depended on the height of the man’s status.

National Surf and Turf Day - This is a day celebrated on this day every four years, since this is Leap Year Day and so only shows up every four years.  It is a day to eat a combination of seafood and beef.  Typically it is steak and shrimp or steak and lobster.

National Cupcake Day – This is a Canadian holiday for the purpose of raising money for SPCAs and Humane Societies. Make some cupcakes and have a National Cupcake Day party where you can serve your cupcakes and collect donations that will then go to the Ottawa Humane Society.

International Underlings Day - Also celebrated every four years on this day, this day was created by Peter Morris in 1984 who decided that since bosses, secretaries and administrators had an official day, the average worker should have one too. Some organizations give their workers a paid day off today, as long as they agree to spend the day volunteering for projects that help the environment.

Rare Disease Day – Celebration is probably not the best term for what people do on this day. It is really a day that is more about raising awareness of rare diseases and trying to raise money for research to find cures for them. Unfortunately, since rare diseases affect only a small percentage of the population, there isn't the same level of financial support for research that you find with the diseases that affect more people such as breast cancer and heart disease. This means that progress on fighting these diseases is slow, which is heartbreaking for the families that are profoundly impacted. This day takes place on the last day of February.

International Repetitive Strain Injury Awareness Day - Celebrated on the last day of February, this is a day to be aware of the danger of straining your body by doing the same movements over and over again either through work or in your personal life.  If you type constantly, you can have problems with your wrists and fingers.  If you are a deli meat slicer, you can have problems with your shoulder and elbow.  Be aware of the movements you make and try to make sure that you adjust the way you move so that it causes less strain on your body, such as using an ergonomic keyboard, or using more of your body to move something instead of just your arms or back.

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